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Prefabrication innovation saves dairy producer one month of on-site construction

When dairy producer Grande Cheese decided to expand their operations with a new milk intake building, the decision was made to place the new facility across the road from the existing plant, creating more available space within the existing plant for future expansions. But having the milk intake in a separate facility created its own challenge: how to transport the milk safely and effectively from one facility to the other. The solution: A 160-foot, 139,000-pound clear span piping bridge.

However, this solution posed its own set of challenges. Building the bridge on site would cause significant disruption to the existing plant’s critical operations. To mitigate the impact, the Boldt project team worked with the bridge fabricator to develop an innovative approach to building the bridge off site.

To stick-build this in the traditional manner would have drastically extended the duration of the on-site interruption and created all kinds of logistical issues for the existing plant. James Farrell, Boldt’s project manager says prefabrication definitely was the answer for Grande Cheese. “Taking the prefabrication approach, that’s going to increase the output this facility can put out to the market.”

The bridge was shipped by the fabricator in six segments, five of which were sent to the prefabrication facility where they were fitted with the necessary piping. Those five segments were then combined into two pieces and joined with the remaining piece at the project site. Finally, the entire 160-foot length of bridge was lifted into place as a single piece by two cranes.

By assembling the majority of the bridge and piping completely off-site, the construction team was able to reduce the duration of on-site activities by a full month, helping the client begin production faster and achieve significantly faster speed-to-market without the disruption conventional construction methods would have imposed.

About The Boldt Company
The Boldt Company is one of the leading construction management firms in the United States. The firm is a nationally recognized leader in Integrated Lean Project Delivery® within a variety of markets including healthcare, industrial, commercial and energy and power. Boldt is headquartered in Appleton, Wisconsin and has 18 offices nationwide.